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Autism Expressed is one of the emerging brands in the United States that offer interactive learning to people with autism. For a long time, learners suffering from autism have not been given the special care they need to succeed in their academic lives. The world is embracing technology and in the near future, it will not be possible for one to survive without the necessary technological skills. It is for this reason that Autism Expressed was founded in Philadelphia to help the learners with autism. According to Schopler (34), Autism Expressed is one of the emerging firms that have taken innovation to the next level in an effort to improve the learning environment. The brand Autism Expressed is fast gaining popularity in the United States, although its services are yet to be available in all the states. However, many parents who have children suffering from autism are very enthusiastic about this product. This brand has not yet gone global, but its performance in the current market shows that it has a great potential. With an appropriate branding strategy in the international market, Autism Expressed can realize huge success in its globalization strategy. In this study, the researcher seeks to determine a branding strategy that this firm can use to launch its products in the international market.
According to Gelder (83), a number of branding strategies exist that a firm can choose from when entering the new market. The best way of identifying the most appropriate branding strategy is to understand the market that the brand targets. In its effort to capture the global market, the most appropriate market outside the United States will be China. China is home to about one third of the world’s total population. The country’s economy has also been on the rise and the purchasing power of its citizens is at all times high (Kapferer 33). With a population of about 1.34 billion people, this market is very attractive and can give Autism Expressed a leverage as it seeks to spread to other parts of the world. However, the market has fundamental differences from what Autism Expressed has been experiencing in the United States. Despite the huge population, the purchasing power of individual citizens is way below that of the United States. The consumers in this market are also very sensitive to pricing, something that is in not common in the United States. This means that this firm will need to develop a branding strategy that will be able to sustain these new environmental forces. However, it is important to note that the number of super rich Chinese is also on the rise, making this market diversified in terms of the purchasing power of the targeted clients.
In this new setting, Continuous Innovation branding strategy will be the most appropriate. As Gelder (93) notes, when entering a new market that is diversified, it may be necessary to maintain a continuous innovation in order to meet the needs of the targeted audience. The proposition given to the brand should capture the expectations of all the targeted audience. The promise that the brand offers to the public should be in line with the desires of the clients. This firm will need to prepare this branding strategy in a way that will meet its own expectations in the market. the following are some of the simple steps that can be followed when developing this branding strategy.
Defining the brand to the customers
Autism Expressed is a new brand that is not known in China. The management will need to start by defining this brand to the targeted audience. To do this, the firm will need to clearly define its mission. In this regard, it will inform the Chinese market that it is offering new hope to the learners suffering from autism. With the help of this firm, they will be in a position to learn just like their normal peers. Using new technologies, Autism Expressed will offer them unique ability to learn in a system that turns their weakness into strength. The firm will also need to define specific benefits that clients will get by using this brand. The following are some of the unique benefits of using Autism Expressed.
- Learners will be able to use technology-based systems to conduct their own research on various academic issues.
- It will be possible for the learners to engage in virtual group discussions while at home with the help of the software offered by this brand.
- Students will be in a better position to apply technology in the learning and social lives outside school.
The Chinese customers are not yet aware of this product, and this means that they have not developed any perception towards this brand. The marketing unit should make an effort to ensure that it creates a positive image in the minds of the customers when it enters this market. according to Kapferer (87), the first impression matters a lot. The value that a customer associates a given brand with during the first time of interaction always leaves a lasting impression. If this impression is negative, then changing it may not be an easy process. for this reason, it will be necessary to avoid any missteps during the initial stages of market entry. This firm should make an effort to ensure that its products are viewed to be of very high quality. This will be based on the proposition taken when developing promotional campaigns for the product. To emphasize on the quality of the product, the firm may start by targeting the middle and upper class members of this society. This will make them develop an image that will be desired by all the target markets in the country. After some time, it may develop a sub-brand to target the majority of the customers who may be in the lower social ladder.
According to Gelder (72), the logo has one of the most important features of a brand in the market. It is the image that clients associate a given brand in a given market. Given that developing of a new logo is not within the purview of this strategy report, it is suggested that this firm will use the existing logo. However, the brand message will be redefined to fit into the Chinese market. As Kapferer (24) observes, the values cherished by the Americans may not be the same values that are popular in China. For this reason, it will be necessary to develop the brand message after understanding and conducting research on the target market. The brand attributes should emphasize on the quality, uniqueness in meeting the special needs of learners with autism, and the reliance on emerging technologies. According to Gelder (59), it is crucial for a firm to be consistent when developing its message. What it promises to offer today can only be improved tomorrow, but not completely changed. This is important to win trust of the customers. Autism Expressed promises technology-based learning environment for learners with autism. This promise should not change. It can only be advanced to offer superior value.
Choose Appropriate Communication Channel
After developing an appropriate strategy to define and position the brand to the customers, the next important stage will be to select the most appropriate communication channels to reach the target audience (Kapferer 56). Given that Autism Expressed will be targeting parents, it will be necessary to use mass media. Television commercials and newspaper advertisements are some of the best channels of communicating the brand and its attributes to the targeted audience. Additionally, this firm may also use the social media to increase its awareness in the market. Facebook and Tweeter are some of the commonly used communication platforms in this country. The firm may also use YouTube to share videos to demonstrate to the clients how its system works. As Gelder (65) says, it will be necessary to maintain presences in the market once the product is introduced.
Autism Expressed is one of the most innovative brands in the American markets that offer special programs for learners with autism. The firm may need to explore the Chinese markets as it seeks to expand its market share. However, this will require an effective branding strategy that will be in line with the expectations of the market. The firm will need to conduct research in this market before developing appropriate brand message.
Gelder, Sicco. Global Brand Strategy: Unlocking Brand Potential Across Countries, Cultures & Markets. London: Kogan Page, 2005. Print.
Kapferer, Jean-Noël. The New Strategic Brand Management: Creating and Sustaining Brand Equity Long Term. London: Kogan Page, 2008. Print.
Schopler, Eric. The Research Basis for Autism Intervention. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Pub, 2001. Print.